So, I finally did it. I finally finished In Darkness. This is the last chapter of In Darkness and I hope you all enjoy.
This story was brought to you by the wonderings of my mind, loads of time spent writing and rewriting and my heart and soul. It amazes me to see the number of people who are waiting with baited breath for the conclusion of the story. If I could please you all, I totally would. But alas, one can never please all. If you have complaints, though, you are more than welcome to question and flame and I will attempt to explain away my choice of an ending.
Okay, so before I give away what happens, I shall quickly stop my ramblings that only come whenever I end a story. There's no way I could possibly thank ALL the reviewers who reviewed. I am so thankful for all of you guys. You are the ones who made this story what it is.
I would love to specially thank all those who spent time leaving thoughtful and specific reviews, they really made my writing better =)
Love is our resistance
They keep us apart and they won't stop breaking us down
And hold me, our lips must always be sealed
If we live our life in fear
I'll wait a thousand years
Just to see you smile again
Quell your prayers for love and peace
You'll wake the thought police
We can hide the truth inside
It could be wrong, could be wrong
But it should've been right
- "Resistance" by Muse
She stood seconds after the second round of screams filled the air after an even louder boom shook the very ground. The screams called to her in ways nothing ever had.
She couldn't just leave the people of Juuban to die. That wasn't worth anything. She had been chosen as their protector and she would protect them. Even if it was the last thing she did as good Sailor Moon.
She shed her coat, hat and bag, knowing she had no use for them anymore. She was done hiding. It had gone on long enough, she couldn't bare it anymore. She had always thought she was the type to cower and run- but now that the time came to do that, she would fight. She never could do anything right.
"Moon Prism Power, Make-Up!" She shouted into the air, not caring that heads whipped in her direction and as people watched in amazement and surprise as she transformed for all on the street to see.
She took her time, the first time she had taken it slow in what felt like years. She had transformed in a hurry for the last forever, too worried about what was going on, and she had forgotten how calming it felt. The power flitted around her, blocking her insecurities, her fears, and the Darkness and everything else that fluttered in her mind for the minute it took for her boots and gloves to strap on.
She didn't say anything as her eyes met the people's who still stood silently and still, watching her. They didn't make a move towards her. She left unsaid all she wanted to say to them as she began to walk towards Tokyo Tower. Walking soon turned to running, and then she was off with speed she didn't know she had. Her body was filled with the sort of adrenaline that pumped everything else away- all the tiredness of her body shed till she felt rejuvenated.
She jumped from a car to a truck to the top of a low building, climbing up to reach the larger building on its side. When she finally reached the top, she looked towards where she knew Tokyo Tower was. It was, by far, the biggest building, towering over the entire town. She watched as a bolt of lightning streaked down beside the building, knowing it was Jupiter showing off. Mercury was obviously the cause of the pouring of the rain, knowing that Usagi hated the rain.
At a usual time- or back when this had all first started, she would have been hiding in her room. She had once used to be terrified of lightning and thunder, yet when the largest roar of thunder shot through the town, she barely winced. Casting another glance at the Tower, she took off towards it.
The Moon Wand was already gripped tightly in her hand, her subspace pocket filled to the brim with whatever weapon she could have found at Motoki's. Kitchen knives, letter openers, sport bats, and everything she had thought would help in any way possible. She rolled her eyes at herself for even thinking any of it would help her in any way. She doubted they would even give her the chance to hit back.
Which meant she had to find a way up to the roof without them knowing she was there. But if she remembered correctly from the last time she had been there, the only way to the roof was to take the elevator, which they would, no doubt be keeping an eye on.
At that precise moment, there was a roar in the sky as a jet flew by her towards Tokyo Tower, followed by about five more.
She watched in awe and amazement as they released fire on Tokyo Tower, the sound of the bullets even drowning out the rain and thunder, which continued despite the assault. However, the next shot of lightning hit one of the jets and sent it twirling backwards and into the building beside Tokyo Tower. A loud explosion rocked everything in what felt like the world as the jet blew up along with much of the building.
Her eyes widened as she remembered what she was there for, and took off towards the chaos. Another jet went down as Dark power slammed into it, a shout of victory coming from those on the roof. The third jet dodged expertly around the comets Nephrite sent, but was unable to avoid the jet of molten fire that shot it down. She shook her head as she ran, wondering why the jets had shone up.
They must have taken her very seriously when she had told them that Endymion and the others would never stop, and had decided to fight for the world they lived in. It reminded her of what she was fighting for. For her family, for Motoki, and for every single human in the world who had even an ounce of goodness in their heart and deserved the chance to live their life. She was just like them, and she would never give up.
She neared finally, a few roofs away from the tower. She used the thunder, rain, and the fight of the jets as cover as she got to the building, and not pausing, she made a high jump towards the tower, covering her face with her hands. The crash of glass was drowned out by another jet going down. She calculated as she jogged through the building, keeping her head low just in case Endymion had posted someone to watch for her. She arrived at the elevators and wildly looked around for the stairs.
They knew she'd try her best to stay out of the elevator- given how it had went down her previous visit to the stupid Tower- and thus, they knew she would take the stairs. But they knew she knew that-
Oh, screw it. She thought as she inserted her fingers in the tiniest of cracks between the elevator doors. Gathering her power, she strained to pull the doors apart. After a little budging, the doors slammed open. She swung towards the rope, and grabbed on tightly, looking up and then down. The elevator was a few floors down-
The building suddenly shook violently, and sound of enraged shouts reached her ears, and she began climbing up as fast as she could. She had to get there before more fighter jets showed up and more innocent people died. Thankfully, she was only about fifteen floors away from the top, and after what felt like five minutes, she was face to face with the doors to the roof. She looked around, and finally her eyes found it. On the opposite side of the doors was a small hatch that looked like it opened to the roof. Taking a deep breath, she lightly swung the rope towards the ledge under the hatch. After a few more swings, she was close enough to grasp the lever above the ledge. She heaved herself off the rope and onto the ledge.
As her foot slipped slightly, she glanced down, seeing endless darkness. Her heart sped up slightly, but she, somehow, remained calm as she just grabbed the lever and hoisted herself straight. She slowly walked on the ledge towards the hatch, being careful not to slip again. Finally, she arrived and turned the handle to release the hatch. The outside cover slid open and she grabbed it before it could fall out. She stood on her toes and listened carefully for any sounds of action.
"-Nephrite! Jet to your right!" She heard Mercury shout, then, "Venus- shoot out the engines!"
She grabbed on to the edges of the hatch and heaved herself up. Her arms stood still as she peeked out. At the exact moment, no one was looking at the elevator, although Mercury shouted orders from in front of them. The others were spread out along the roof, shooting down the many more jets that had shone up. She could vaguely hear Jupiter shouting angrily from all the way down on the roof. Nodding to herself, she pushed forcibly on the edges and using the momentum, rolled out of the hatch.
She pulled her Moon Wand once again out of her subspace pocket as she rolled, and landed on her knees ungracefully. But thankfully, she was on her feet within milliseconds.
She saw Mars and Nephrite turn to look at her, obviously having sensed her now that she dropped her block and focused on drawing power to the Moon Wand. Seeing her opportunity, she blasted the both of them with short blasts of power, actually sending Nephrite sailing through the air to land clumsily on his back.
"Ah, Sailor-" She blasted Mercury before she could sidle up to her and attack, sending her skidding along the floor in what looked like a very painful way.
Her moment of surprise done, she grunted as power slammed against her side, sending her flying through the air to land against the edge of the roof painfully. Her shoulder screamed in pain, but she ignored it as she stood.
"Finally decided to show up, Serenity?" Endymion asked as he stepped towards her. His armor had dents in it that she quickly realized had been made by bullets, but everything else remained untouched. His light skin shone in the light of the moon and from the rain; had she not known how evil he truly was, she would have thought him an angel.
"Decided to stop your stupid speeches?" Jadeite called from beside Mars as he helped her to her feet. The others also stepped closer, standing separately behind Endymion. She met their eyes head-on.
"Yes, and yes," she answered simply.
"You never give up, do you?" Nephrite asked from beside Mars, who was glowering in rage at her. "We've fought and fought but you still come back for more ass-kicking."
"Now you're just asking for a speech," she said strongly, the shadow of a smile on her lips. The faces that looked at her seemed taken aback, blinking slightly confusedly at her. A sense of completeness washed over her as she realized how ready she was for this. She was ready to die fighting, for once, she wasn't complaining and whining for her lot in life. It had turned out how it had. Nothing she could do to change that now, other than fight for the world she loved, for the world her friends had loved.
She belatedly realized that she had given a speech, but this one had been for herself.
"Just stop fighting already. You know it's over, Usagi," Venus said from the left of Kunzite. The blue eyes that Usagi knew almost as well as Mamoru's were darkened- just like Endymion's now- with malice she knew would be taken out on her if she didn't join them. "It's over, you can't do anything more. We tried our hardest. Just concede peacefully and everything can be right again." The voice was entreating, begging for her to join them and not push this out any longer.
She knew she couldn't last long if they came after her full force- but she had to try, didn't she?
"We can be happy again, Usagi-chan," Jupiter said quietly, the green eyes tinted with a sadness that called to her, "It's been so long since we've been happy."
She had to commend them for their efforts for being peaceful. She doubted it would stay that way for long. "Is that what you really think, Mako-chan? That this will make up happy? That this…this despair will save us from our heartbreak?" She scoffed lightly, her hand tightening ever so slightly on her Moon Wand, "It won't do anything of that sort. All it will do is consume and consume till there's nothing of us or the world left."
She saw Endymion's jaw set, the shadow of irritation passing before his eyes. Even though her eyes had been on Jupiter, his movement had drawn her back to him.
"No. We can't be happy again. Not after this."
A shocked silence followed her words, and even though her heart twitched in pain, she kept her face blank.
"And it is over. Just not in the way any of us wanted," she spoke to the Senshi now, foregoing the irritated Endymion scowling at her and the four Shitennou who were quieter than normal, "Do you remember what we wanted anymore? Do you remember the promise we made each other? What we swore to uphold and protect above all else?" She didn't bother to wait for an answer, for she knew she wouldn't like any answer she would get. "I guess it doesn't matter anymore for any of you. And I understand. I understand completely. If I was in your place, I'm sure it would be the same for me. But it's your turns to understand."
She tightened her hand around the Moon Wand, holding on to her last lifeline. It was the Moon Wand that was giving her the power to speak such words, to finally get it all out. None of them said anything, just watched her with eyes that spoke of nothing and of so much at the same time.
"I can't join you. I remember all the promises. All the fights. All the hardships you went through to protect me and to protect the world. All the pain you endured. I turn my back on that and join you, and there is nothing but a mere shadow of me. I-"
"It's the same old song and dance," Endymion spat, interrupting her impromptu speech, "We've all heard this a billion times before, Serenity. Promises this, love that. You're so high and mighty above us, aren't you? We succumbed, you didn't. But who's alone? Who stands one against all?" His words lashed at her like attacks, striking her heart straight away. "In some twisted way you like what I do to you. All this pain, it gives you something to be above us with. That's why you don't want to join us."
She gripped the Moon Wand in her hand as it began to shake. Fury filled her at his words. How dare he think that? He thought she had some sort of –of superiority complex? After all the crap she'd gone through, he thought she enjoyed it? Did he seriously think everything she had gone through were just because she refused to bow down to him?
"This is just the ramblings of someone on her last whim. You don't have anything left to fight for, Usagi. Just give it up already," the hatred in his voice almost cut her. She guessed he thought she deserved it after all they had been through. Truth was, he deserved it more. A hell lot more.
It was almost like a pissing game, and she saw, somehow, even in her extremely irritated moment, the Senshi and Shitennou's heads whip from Endymion to her.
"You say I like what you do to me?" she narrowed her eyes, "At least I have a reason, it's called being human. What's yours, Endymion? Why do you like it when I beg you to come back to me?" She didn't even take a breath in between her sentence; "It's the only way you can get me beneath you!"
His nostrils flared, and she saw the fire in his eyes as he released it. She barely had time to dodge out of the way before the large blast of Dark power came her way. She landed on the ledge of the building, glancing behind her at the long way down.
"Can't you just let it go?" He snapped at her, "Why do you always have to take the hard route?"
"Can't help it," she shrugged.
With that, she inhaled sharply and before another word could be uttered in anger towards her, she was blasted sideways, flying through the air like a football. She landed on her back painfully, a grunt bursting past her stubborn lips.
Of course, leave it to Venus to use whatever opportunity of distraction she could get. She had been the one to teach Usagi to take advantage of an enemy's lack of attention. It wasn't that great when she was the one who was the enemy; Venus's attacks really hurt.
"You couldn't handle it when I turned, what makes you think you can handle it when it's 10 against 1?" Endymion asked as she shakily got to her feet. His question had been asked by her countless times, and still she hadn't found an answer. She searched for one as they approached her.
They looked carefree, for they knew how it would end. She would fight, she would wane and she would lose. Then they would take her.
A bolt of lightning barely missed her as she dodged out of the way, a groan coming from Jupiter. Sailor Moon couldn't help glancing at her. Jupiter just looked back at her, the green eyes righteous in their fury.
It was something that scared her even more than it ever had before. How they believed so hard that this was the only way to do things. But she guessed she had lost Jupiter's belief long ago, when she had failed to bring Mamoru back, failed to keep the team together.
Well, it was time to get some of that belief back.
Inhaling deeply, she closed her eyes despite the few attacks coming her way. She felt the power gathering within her, like white-hot electricity in her veins. She felt the Dark Power slam into her, felt it attempt to push her back, but it did no good; she was rooted to the spot.
Her eyes opened slowly and white light radiated from her brightly, surrounding her. It was warm and gentle, eclipsing the Dark Power completely. The others surrounded her, Dark Power emanating from them. She could see their frustrated eyes as her block held, their irritation at this not being as easy at they thought it would be.
She may have been a pushover when it came to the bunch of them, but not when lives were at stake. At that thought, energy burst from her, a shock of white light blinding in its intensity. She heard screams and a few shouts pierce the air and she couldn't help but feel both horrified and pleased.
However, the second the energy waned, she was blasted forward furiously, something what felt like a truck hitting her from behind. A dull ache spread through her as she got to her feet after slamming onto the ground.
"Get the Moon Wand!"
She belatedly realized the Moon Wand had slipped from her hands as she flew forward, but one glance at it and the two Senshi and three Shitennou running towards it, and it was in her hand, looking as it had never left.
She barely managed to lift it before Dark Power came at her again, blocking it right before it would have sent her flying again. "How long can you keep this up?" Endymion asked her, breaking the otherwise silence that meant everyone was so focused on releasing Dark Power.
She didn't answer, attempting to steady the Moon Wand in her hand, thinking frantically as she did so. He was definitely right, she wouldn't last long this way; she'd burn out long before they would. They had more range of power than she did.
Breathing in sharply, she whispered to the crystal, "Onegai, Silver Crystal," she wasn't entirely sure what she was asking for that she wasn't already getting but she didn't know what else to do. She had to do something- but what could she do?
What had she ever been able to do?
She had attempted to cleanse them all separately, together, in every which way possible, but nothing had ever worked. And nothing would work other than the one thing she still wasn't too sure she could do.
Even if she had the will to do it, what were the chances she could actually go through with it? One would fall, and she would fall with them, and then the others would get her and it would all end before it had even started- except worse now that one of them was dead.
Then again, could they really die? To be taken, the Senshi must have been dragged to the edge of life- not to mention the number of times she and the others had been badly injured. They were just too unwavering.
No. They couldn't be killed.
She was completely and utterly trapped. They would, sooner rather than later, tire her out and then take her to be one of them.
Her brain pushed the thought out of her head, ordering her to focus on the task at hand, which was to avoid getting hit by Dark Power as often as possible. That also happened to mean that she was jumping like a high bunny and still getting blasted plenty.
She didn't have a plan- hell, she didn't have any idea of what to do other than that simple (it wasn't at all simple) task. Reason tried to pull her into despair, to return her back to the weak Usagi she had always been, telling her, just as Endymion and the Senshi and Shitennou told her, that she was in too deep. She was way beyond her league, one girl against 11 super powered devils? What chance in the world did she have?
"That's right," Sailor Jupiter taunted, "Keep running. You may have been the most agile of us, but guess who's the strongest?" With that, a barrage of Dark Power rained on Sailor Moon, striking her on what felt like every inch of her body. A sharp cry burst from her lips despite her attempt to hold it back- and then she was down.
They blasted her over and over as she writhed on the floor, pain the only thing she could feel- her head was splitting, her body spasmed uncontrollably and oh, her heart- she felt it scream out in pain and the sound came out of her mouth.
So this is what dying felt like.
It was a lot worse than ever before- and she'd taken billions of hits from the Darkness before, but now it burned and split her insides. She assumed it was because of it's intent to rid her of her Light, essentially destroying everything she was.
The barrage lessened and it didn't hurt her horribly to breathe- just ached as she attempted to draw in as much as she could as fast as she could. She couldn't even hear anything except for the sound of blood pounding in her head, drowning out everything. Through her bleary eyes, she could see shoes approaching her from her side. But she couldn't lift her head to see who it was- it turned out it didn't matter because with a gentle shove with the shoe- that had a very sharp heel, she rolled over onto her back.
Mars hovered above her; her violet eyes the sharpest thing that Sailor Moon could see. The black hair fell in portions from her head as she looked down at Sailor Moon. Moon didn't deny the malice in her, not even for a second. The violet eyes were full of curiosity and almost no worry at all. Why would Mars worry? She thought it would just be a bad memory in a few hours.
All of this would be a bad memory.
"Nope. Definitely not out for the count." The words were clear and Moon was dismayed to find that she could hear again. Her body was recovering quickly, slivers of energy returning to her bones. She remained in place, allowing the energy to work it's magic- she knew she didn't have long at all.
"Hit her again," Endymion's voice responded from her left and he was just beyond her sight. She braced herself, gathering the new coming energy to attempt to protect whatever Light within her she possibly could- she couldn't let the Darkness get rid of it.
"-unless…" His voice was taunting as it drew closer. He stepped into her line of sight, bending down to her side. The blue eyes were dark, but she was glad to see the lightest sheen of sweat on his forehead, meaning he had expended at least some effort in the attack. Even though it had nothing on her aching body, she felt a burst of accomplishment go through her, fueling her. He didn't bother to finish his sentence, his mouth setting in a grim line, replacing the previous smirk. He knew exactly what she was thinking, and he definitely didn't like it. "Fine," he said coldly, "Have it your way." He stood, brushing his pants in his very nonchalant way, "Go ahead."
She barely had the chance to brace herself for the attack before her insides were screaming out again. She gripped her hands tightly, willing herself to just hold on.
-but what was left to hold on to?
No! There was always something! She couldn't let the despair get to her; that's what the Darkness was doing. Working on her brain as it destroyed her body. She couldn't let it.
Despite the exponentially increasing pain, she struggled, her eyes closed so she could focus on getting up instead of all the Darkness around her and the pain within her. "Come on, Usagi…" she felt herself say, hoping that self-motivation would be good enough. It obviously was the only motivation she was going to get.
"What the hell!? Don't let her get up!" She vaguely heard Venus shout from behind her as she got to her knees.
"I'll handle it," she heard Nephrite say, ever eager to get on with it. Thankfully he approached from her front, and through her lidded eyes, she was able to duck the kick aimed at her face. Using the power reserve she had, she pulled herself somehow from the barrage of Dark Power, and before they could reposition their attacks on her, she slammed up a wall of Light just in time. She opened her eyes to see a sliver of white energy holding loads of Darkness off.
"Crack it!" She heard the order by Endymion, and it fueled her to think there had been a strain in the voice.
"No duh!" Jupiter called out, and a blast of euphoria went through Moon to hear the voice buckle.
YES! She was holding off-
She went flying forward as something hit her from behind with the strength of a car; she skittered along the floor painfully, her body burning in contact with the speeding concrete below her.
She didn't have to turn around to know that it was Jadeite who had hit her, sneak he had always been.
"Don't get so cocky now," he called, "Your back isn't covered!"
"Ugh," Mercury said, "Can we finish this already?" Ami had always been the patient one- didn't seem like it that much anymore.
"My pleasure!" Moon heard Zoicite say softly and had it not been for that, she'd probably have been cut in half as a sword went whizzing by her midsection. She pulled back just in time, giving her a harsh swipe through her stomach. A searing pain flooded her as blood pooled from the cut.
"Hey! Watch it!" Endymion called, "We're trying to turn her, not kill her!"
"Same difference," she muttered to herself as she ignored the cut as best as possible and slammed Zoicite with an efficient tiara throw, sending him flying backwards, screaming like a girl. Unfortunately for Moon, the others were waiting for her to lose her tiara before they came at her again. And she was writhing on the floor again, as if the fight back hadn't even been there.
She brought the Moon Wand up again and held it in front of her, surrounding herself with a halo of white light, the Darkness pressing in on all sides.
Taking a deep breath, she prepared herself.
And let go of the power she could feel within her, willing it to explode all around her. It blasted from her like a bomb, bright light blinding everything around her, completely eclipsing the Darkness that had only seconds ago just seemed to be threatening all of existence.
She kept it blasting, feeling it leave her like tons of water with only one small hole as an outlet. The sounds of shouts reached her ears, sounding like those in extreme pain, but she kept on going, knowing it was the only way. Hope ignited within her once again as the Moon Wand burst with power she had never known she had had.
The energy inside of her came to a stuttering halt as she drooped weakly- weariness made every bone ache, but she stepped forward, now being able to see as the light only shone weakly from her. Eleven bodies lay sprawled on the ground around her. The closest was Venus, who lay silently on her back, looking the most weak that Usagi had ever seen her.
Moon stepped closer tentatively, keeping her guard up all around her; sure that someone would jump up and tackle her or something. But there was no sound, silence permeating the air around her, which suddenly seemed lighter as the rain seemed to be refreshing and thunder and lightning nonexistent.
Venus looked peaceful as Moon reached her side and lowered towards her. The blonde hair was curled all around her, her face glowing next to it. Moon had to admit that in the darkness, Minako shone brightly. It was different as to how she shone in the light, there she reflected the brightness around her, here she gave off the light, as if she had a reserve within her and she was willing to share it. It confused Moon as to how she could do that while turned evil.
Moon reached towards her to brush a hair off her face, pausing when she saw Venus inhale sharply, knowing her to be conscious. Despite that and the exhaustion in her, she willed up more power- where it came from, she had no idea- and touched the other girl's cheek-
Pain blasted her back, running through her like thousands of electric bolts. Darkness filtered into her from that instant of touch between her and Venus- and she could tell that just like she had been injected with a dose of Darkness, Venus was experiencing the same thing with Light. The sound of whimpers, both hers and Venus's mixed together and she wasn't sure of which were her own and which were Minako's.
She should have known touching Venus was a bad idea; she must have put up a block when she figured out that Moon was coming towards her. Fighting off the Darkness left her completely drained, collapsed on the floor, inches away from Venus who also seemed out for the count.
The sound of footsteps reached her ears ad she turned her head to see the others approaching. They were inhumanely pale, their faces drawn tight. Mars and Endymion particularly looked pale, their white skin seeming almost colorless and thin next to their dark hair. Moon struggled to her feet, feeling as if she would collapse any second.
This wasn't good.
Sure, they were weakened, maybe even drained somewhat, but the Silver Crystal was telling her it didn't have much left, that it was weak against all this Darkness, that she would be on her own soon. She needed to get out of there. Her eyes flicked towards the elevator, but it was all the way on the opposite end of the roof and then towards the ledge, not particularly far away. If she could make it, she'd probably be able to jump from this roof to a lower roof of a building next door.
"Don't even think about it," Endymion said harshly as he stepped between her and the ledge, "This ends now." His eyes were narrowed, filled with dark thoughts that she wasn't sure she wanted to understand. He emanated frustration with her, and she could tell he wouldn't let her get away. Not today. "Venus?"
Moon looked to her left to see Venus slowly getting to her feet, her face pained. Kunzite helped her up, worry easy to see written on his face.
"I'm fine," she said quietly, her eyes downcast. They raised up to look at Usagi, "Just get her."
It was as if the others had been waiting for Venus to give the order, because the second she did, they sharpened. They straightened, their past tiredness replaced by sheer determination.
"On the count of three," Kunzite said, glancing at the Shitennou and Senshi and Endymion, "Let it out on her." Sailor Moon grasped the Moon Wand tightly, feeling it strain under the pressure. "As much as you can." He was speaking as if she couldn't hear him, but she wished she truly couldn't. Maybe getting hit that hard with that much would be better as a surprise attack, where she couldn't watch them as they gathered themselves together, knowing full well that it would take her to the edge of death.
"One," she could hear the power in his voice, and that scared her even more. She would have thought she couldn't get more scared, but Kunzite always had had the same monotone voice, shrouded in mystery, but now, it dripped with power, with strength she would have to fight or die.
"Two." He was counting so slowly that she wanted to slap him for extending her horror, but she knew it was because they were gathering the Darkness together. The air got heavy again- even heavier than it had been before, a bright flashing of lightning illuminating the town around them and consequently the enraged thunder shaking what felt like everything in the world, including her very heart.
She pulled herself together, the Moon Wand shakily held up in front of her in defense. She could only hope that it would be enough to last her- but deep down, she knew it wasn't. Not even close.
She closed her eyes; sure that seeing the attack against her would only scare her all the more.
The eerie voice blasted over the silence since the last clap of thunder. And Sailor Moon had barely the time to turn her head to see her illuminated in the light from a flash of lightning before power roared all around her, flying by to slam fully against the eleven standing in front of her. She barely heard the indignant shouts or the irritated groans as they landed with loud thuds on the opposite side of the roof. The blast had sent them flying even farther than most of her hits.
Sailor Moon was frozen, staring up at the woman, entirely sure she was an angel.
She floated through the air to land beside Sailor Moon, her violet hair hovering behind her eerily.
"Stay away from the Princess!" The woman sneered at the fallen Shitennou and Senshi. Her figure exuded power in a way Usagi hadn't felt in a long time, and the scent of memories long past filled Usagi.
"Sailor Pluto?" She finally managed to whisper. The elder woman turned to look at Usagi, her Time Staff brandished towards the slowly recovering Shitennou and Senshi. Her hair was a forest green and came all the way down to her knees, violet eyes smiled kindly at Usagi, matching the violet bow and skirt that she wore. There was a weariness in her that Usagi hadn't seen before, as if she had been fighting for very long and very hard against something unseen. Usagi looked at the Time Staff then, which looked different than she recalled it. Before the Garnet had glistened in the light and dark alike, but now, it looked as if it had been glued together from millions of little pieces and the staff seemed to have been snapped. What had happened to her?
"Princess Serenity," Pluto said, bowing her head at Usagi, "I would bow fully, but I will not give these cretins the chance to attack again."
"What-how are you here?" Moon whispered, her brain slowly starting to work again, "We tried contacting you before- but there was never-" When Minako had suggested getting the Outer Senshi involved, Usagi had thought their time of troubles was finally over, that they'd find a way to turn Endymion good again and everything would be perfect. When there hadn't been a response…
It had been Endymion. She had always known it, deep down; despite thinking that he didn't have enough power over the Outer Senshi- he had done something.
"I know what you're thinking, Serenity. But it wasn't me- originally anyway," Endymion said. He was up and walking towards them, leaving the others to recover on their own. "She knew exactly what was going on and was perfectly content to let you handle it on your own," his voice was twisted with malice and she could tell there was more to the story. That's always how it was whenever he spoke. So she turned to Pluto expectantly, who grimaced at her.
"He locked me up in the Time Corridor with Darkness," she said, her voice disgusted at the idea that she had actually let that stop her, "Otherwise, I would have been here by your side. You know that, Princess." Sailor Moon did know that, no matter how much her past mother had insisted that Pluto could never interfere, she was still a guardian of Princess Serenity, and that always overshadowed orders.
Endymion narrowed his eyes at Pluto, and Moon felt his hatred for her, more than she had ever seen him direct at anyone before. "You think you can stop us, Pluto?" he sneered, and behind him the others approached, flanking him. She couldn't help but roll her eyes at the lame show of power.
This was Sailor Pluto.
Pluto must have been thinking the same thing, for before the others could attack, she sent another attack slamming towards them. Venus, Kunzite, Mars, Nephrite and Endymion easily dodged, while the others went flying back once again. Venus and the others didn't even bother to gather together when they released their attacks upon Moon and Pluto. But Moon slammed up a wall just in time and the second she lowered it, Pluto sent the others running with another attack.
"You've changed, Princess," Pluto said to Moon, a hint of a real smile on her face as she glanced at Usagi, "A formidable opponent you make now."
Usagi flashed her a grin, "And you haven't changed a bit. Can still send anyone running in fear," seriousness returned instantly, "Are…they going to come?" She knew Pluto would understand what she was asking, if Uranus, Neptune and Saturn would show up too. It would make everything perfect for it would hold Endymion back for as long as Moon needed to figure out what in the world to do now.
…or they would commit the act that Usagi so feared to do. They wouldn't hesitate. They were strong enough to do it.
"No," Pluto said quietly and Usagi gaped at her. "Endymion has effectively delayed them enough that to awaken them now would mean only death for them. He will not allow them to fight. He will kill them before they have the chance to develop enough to stop him." Her tone was despondent and she raised her staff to hit the Senshi and Shitennou with another attack. "I don't even know how I was able to get out. Someone took advantage of his distraction and opened a door for me, otherwise, I've been struggling to get out for months." She glared at one person in particular as she swiped her Time Staff, sending Endymion reeling backwards, "We have to kill him. This has to end now."
How had this happened? How had Endymion cowed the Outer Senshi? The Darkness was stronger than ever before- if it could stop the Outer Senshi, what match was she?
Endymion laughed coldly as he stood, "I told you, Pluto, I swore that I would change it." His smile was colder than Usagi had ever seen and it sent shivers down her spine. "I am so close to having it all, you are not going to stop me," he straightened, seeming taller and more menacing than before, "No one is." And he raised his hands to send Darkness streaming at them, causing the two of them to separate.
He was so different from the Mamoru she remembered- and even the Endymion from her past life. Back then he had been a pampered Prince, more loving, yet lonely, than any other person she had met. Now, in this life, as Metallia's host, he had turned into a Dark Lord. She didn't think his evilness knew many bounds. He had tried to rape her countless times, he had destroyed her friends' lives and he would destroy everything he touched if only it meant he could have her. She had to remember all that- or in the face of untouchable beauty, she would fall.
"Mars, Mercury, Jade and Zoi to Sailor Moon. The rest, with me," he ordered, moving so he was further separating Moon from Pluto. Sailor Moon cast a glance at Pluto, who nodded at her, saying she'd be fine with the small movement. But her eyes were worried, and Moon belatedly realized for her, not for herself.
Of course, there was really no surprise there. They always cared for her more than they cared for themselves- that was what had gotten them all in this mess in this first place.
Mars and the three others surrounded her within an instant, leaving the ledge behind her to block her off completely. She could feel the exhaustion trying to pull her under but she swatted it away with energy that Pluto had given her by showing up. If Pluto was here, she had to try harder. Moon had to do this, it was the only way. And so, she placed her hand over her broach, emotion filling her and calling out to the Silver Crystal. It answered her call and the Moon Wand lengthened, the crescent straightening.
"A sword?" Mars asked, the tone telling her that Mars didn't believe it would do anything. "Do you even know how to use that thing?" Moon knew Mars thought it useless, thought her useless against the Darkness. Mars had never lost her belief in Light, but when the power of the Darkness was more than she could even conceive, it had broken her. She had once believed in Usagi more than anyone had ever before. It was up to Usagi to give her that faith back.
Moon looked at the silver blade, admiring it glistening in the moonlight. "Do you remember, you guys always used to ask where me and Minako went every Sunday morning?" She brought it flashing down, the air zinging with the speed and power, "That'll answer your question well enough." Behind her, she could hear the others fighting Pluto, sounding as if they would bring the building down within seconds.
"We'll see," Jadeite said simply as he shot at her from her left, his sword brought up to strike at her. She blocked it, twisting so it slid off her sword.
"Bring it," she said and Zoicite stepped forward, along with Mercury and Mars, all sporting swords as well. She gulped, not entirely sure she could handle all four of them- but she had to try, didn't she? Minako had taught her and pushed her harder than anyone else could have, and she had turned the sword into an extension of Usagi's hand. Bad thing was that the Shitennou had two lifetimes worth of practice.
They came at her all at once, Zoicite managing to swipe her once again, this time across her shoulder as she dodged Mars and Jadeite and blocked Mercury.
"Freakin' stay still," Jadeite mumbled as he came at her from behind, trying once again to sneak up on her. She parried his sword and punched him in the face just as Mercury cut her, causing blood to blossom from a cut along her cheek. She realized belatedly that Zoicite and Mars were missing- and was blasted back by Dark power.
As she landed, she glanced away to check on Pluto. All she ended up being able to see was blurs moving around and the colliding of power in all directions within the small circle that fight had ended up in. She got up just as Mars sent another blast, this one propelling her backwards, and in just the right direction that she ended up closer to Pluto. Making her decision, she pointed her sword at the battle in which no one was paying any attention to her.
"WATCH OUT!" Nephrite shouted, sensing her building power just as she released it at them. It hit Endymion, Venus and Jupiter right on, causing all three to freeze in their attacks. Venus and Jupiter collapsed while Endymion's eyes seemed glazed over, staring right at her. It was almost as if he wasn't really seeing anything, his mouth twisted in a weird way that was between a smile and grimace.
As she stared back, she saw the briefest of flashes of recognition within the blue, and she forgot all else around her. It pulled her in, the swirling blue that suddenly seemed lighter.
"-PRINCESS!" Pluto shrieked from behind Endymion, where she had been fighting Kunzite and Nephrite. She was staring at Usagi, her eyes wide, and emotion brimming within them. It was the most fear Pluto had ever known, Usagi could easily tell from the way her voice cracked.
Sailor Moon whirled around, raising her sword to block off whichever attack was coming her way, but the sword was already at her stomach-
But it had stopped.
She could feel the pinprick, tight against the skin a few inches above her belly button. She pulled back wildly, careening backwards and losing her balance. A scream pitched the air, going on as she stared up at Jadeite, his eyes wild, as he remained half-lunging, his sword extended forward in a way she knew she never would have survived. It had been the same brute force attack he had used to bring down Mars- and it should have brought her down.
Sailor Moon gasped for air, her hands behind her where she had fallen on her butt. The sword handle remained underneath her right palm.
"Princess!" Moon realized that Pluto was beside her, her hand comfortingly on the shoulder that Zoicite hadn't cut.
"W-what happened?" She whispered as she looked around. Everyone was frozen just as they had been. Venus and Jupiter were half-standing after recovering, Kunzite and Nephrite were mid-attack, Mars, Mercury and Zoicite were looking towards Jadeite, satisfied smiles on their faces. Endymion stood where he had before, and she realized belatedly that she had fallen right into his trap. If it hadn't been for Pluto's time freeze, she would be gone at this very moment and his fake Mamoru-eyes would have been the last thing she remembered as Tsukino Usagi.
It did seem sort of fitting.
It was what had given her memory back of their shared past- it would also end her life.
"We have to go. Now," Pluto said quietly, sounding as if there was something in her throat, "You can't be taken. We have to run." Sailor Moon felt a shiver run through her, feeling as if she were going to be sick.
"We can't. He'll find me," she whispered when she was finally able to. She sat forward, bringing her knees to her chest, wrapping her arms around them. "No matter how far, how fast we move. You know that, Pluto," she didn't bother to look at Pluto, looking instead at the town around them.
She wished it weren't true, but all this time had taught her something about Endymion. He would never give up on her. She could hide on the other side of the universe, but sooner rather than later, he would track her down. No, she could never hide from him.
"I couldn't just let him kill you…" Pluto said, "Oh, Goddess, how did I let this happen?"
Sailor Moon glanced at the wearied Sailor Senshi at her side, "This wasn't your fault, Pluto. It's just how this life turned out." She shrugged slightly, wincing as the movement irritated her wounds; "Fate seems to have it in for us. It just never works out…"
"I'm so sorry, Princess. I failed you." Pluto's head hung, and Usagi could hear the tears in her voice. "I'm so sorry."
All of the pity she had for herself just up and vanished in the face of Pluto's misery. "Oh, Pluto," she turned slightly, hugging Pluto's side, "You didn't fail me. You gave me a chance, gave me belief. That was more than I could have ever asked for," the long violet hair brushed Moon's back as the body shook beside hers. Moon buried her face in her side, "It'll be okay. I'll make it okay. I promise." She wasn't sure Pluto understood her words, but she had a feeling she knew.
The shaking stopped quickly and Pluto pulled away, her face drawn closed. There was a defeat in her eyes that Moon hadn't seen before. Endymion had broken her when he had trapped her in the Time Corridor, forcefully made her watch but unable to do anything. "I'm keeping you safe," the elder Senshi said, rising slowly, her Time Staff half raised beside her, "Come on-" She was suddenly yanked away from Sailor Moon, a gasp of surprise at her lips.
"The best way to have kept her safe really wasn't turning your back on me," Endymion's voice came from behind Pluto, the sword at her neck.
"PLUTO!" Sailor Moon shouted, jumping to her feet, hands extended, "Endymion, please, don't do anything-"
The Time Staff was jabbed behind Pluto, and Endymion grunted as the long rod slammed into his side almost like a sword, but he only pulled Pluto closer, his arm holding her neck and the sword at its side.
"Like what?" he growled, "Like killing the Time Senshi? This is her fault. She underestimated me for the last time. You think a mere time freeze will stop me, ME?" He was shouting now, glaring at Sailor Moon and holding a struggling Pluto tightly. "Prince Endymion, who kept her locked up within her own home for months on end?" Pluto's face was paling, but she pulled at his arm from both hands still, sounding as if she were saying something, fury in her eyes.
"ENDYMION! Let her go!" She attempted to step forward, but he stepped back, tightening his hold on Pluto, a warning in his eyes, and she stopped in her place, her arms raised in surrender. Goddess, Pluto couldn't be hurt this way.
"Drop the Time Freeze," he said, barely glancing down at Pluto. He shone with Darkness, and she knew it was the only reason he had broken through the freeze. They had underestimated him, again. He wasn't going to stop, not unless all the Darkness went away.
"M-" Pluto was saying something, but as she said it, she slammed her head back, sending Endymion reeling backwards, arm loosened enough that Pluto slipped through, "Make me!" She gasped for air, turning around to face him within an instant. She looked tired; her body sagged with weight that she had been carrying her entire life- which had lasted centuries upon centuries.
She blasted Endymion back, hitting him square in the chest with a Dead Scream. She spread it so the frozen Venus, Nephrite and Jupiter crumpled to the floor. Sailor Moon bent down quickly, grabbing her sword from the floor.
Suddenly, within the silver of the sword, she saw a flash from behind. She whirled around, her sword held out to block Kunzite.
"PLUTO! They're getting out!" She shouted over her shoulder as Kunzite slid his sword expertly down hers. Kunzite didn't say anything as he came at her again, the smallest amount of fury in his eyes- more than she was used to seeing. He was usually so cold, emotionless, not allowing anything to get to him.
She blocked another attack, stepping behind her as he advanced. She knew she couldn't handle Kunzite- hell, Venus had had trouble with Kunzite ever since the beginning, and Venus was eons above her. She charged the sword with power silently as he parried, and the second their swords touched, he was blasted back.
He didn't even bother walking over to her, teleporting and slashing her chest. A shriek ripped from her lips as energy drained from her in the form of her blood.
"Drop the fucking time freeze," Kunzite said, glancing sharply at Pluto, who was trying to get past Endymion towards her, "Or I stab her here and now."
Sailor Moon watched the fight go from Pluto's eyes, saw as Pluto admitted defeat.
She couldn't see it. It hurt too much. She had destroyed every single one of her friends, one by one. The Shitennou had long ago been lost, the Senshi were gone, and Mamoru had been taken.
It was over.
There wasn't going to be a happy ending.
Her hand moved by itself, her heart telling her to stop but her mind overriding it.
And she stuck the sword forward, throwing her weight before she could stop herself.
Kunzite was turning to look at her, having sensed her motion. The look of surprise spread across his face, wiping away all composure.
"Not if I stab you first," she whispered up at him. He looked down at her, so close to her that she could feel his breath on her forehead. She had never realized just how tall he was- even taller than Endymion.
"Huh," he said quietly, "They were so sure you couldn't do it." He coughed, and her eyes followed the trickle of blood as it dribbled from his mouth. His eyes were pulled down and she briefly saw more emotion within the grey than she had ever thought was possible. There was love, pain, hurt, sadness- just so much. It brimmed over, almost as if after all the time of being forced blank, it had had enough.
"Oh, Kunzite…" she whispered, tears barely felt on her cheeks, "I'm so sorry." She remembered the Kunzite who had helped hide her and Endymion in their past life, the Kunzite who had protected their secret, the Kunzite who, although he denied it, would have gotten into any amount of trouble if he could prevent Endymion and her getting caught. He had been a guardian of her just like Venus, and she knew if he had been allowed to stay true to her, he would have done everything to protect her.
"I always knew you could do it," he said down to her, his eyes serious and filled with pain, "Those eyes…" he shook his head slightly, "They've seen too much pain…"
He pulled away from her, and the sword slid out of his chest. She stared at the red, watching as it dripped from the wound and her sword.
Kunzite closed his eyes and she swore she saw the weight fall right off of him. He crumpled to the ground, his sword falling before he did, sounding loudly as it clattered in the silence as Endymion ran towards him.
"Kunz!" Endymion fell beside his Head General, his body shaking as his hands found the wound and pushed down, attempting to stop the blood flow. But as she watched the fallen Shitennou, there was no intake of breath, no movement at all.
Her eyes found the wound that Endymion was attempting to stem. It lay right above the heart.
A fatal wound.
Not even the Shitennou could come back from that.
Or he usually could have…but something had been different about him. He had seemed weaker than usual, slower than usual, as if he had been badly hurt recently. She understood why Sailor Venus was that way- just having been turned and all, but why Kunzite.
He should have been fine. Even this shouldn't have killed him.
She hadn't meant to…
A shiver went through her as she realized the extremity of what she had just done. She must have made a sound because Endymion looked up at her. His eyes were wild, denial within them.
The denial turned into hatred as she looked speechlessly. His breathing became ragged. But instead of raising his hand at her, he turned around before she could move and was running at Pluto, a shout of rage on his lips.
"PLUTO!" Pluto had been watching them and she only raised her Garnet Rod to blast Endymion back, but he blocked with Darkness and approached her with lightning speed. The sword swiped wildly, catching the tall Senshi across her face, leaving a horrible trail of blood. Pluto screamed, clasping her face as she pulled back.
In that moment, sound blasted all around them, as it seemed the world came back to life. Jadeite fell to the ground loudly, and Venus, Jupiter and Nephlite shouted as they felt the remnants of the attack Pluto had sent at them.
"What the hell!?" Zoicite asked loudly, "What-" His voice caught horribly and she didn't have to look at him to know he was looking at the fallen Shitennou at her feet.
She waited for them to explode, and didn't have to wait very long. Venus let out a wail that made Sailor Moon shake as she ran towards Kunzite. She was speaking, tears starting to well from her eyes as she fell beside him, clutching his shirt tightly.
Sickness hit her in the stomach as she watched Venus mourn her lover.
She had done that.
Pluto had recovered from her hit, sending a Dead Scream at the enraged Endymion. Her face was bloody from the cut across it and she wiped it, casting Sailor Moon a look that showed pride. Pluto was saying she had done the right thing.
But how could it have been right when she inflicted such pain upon her friends? To kill one of them- it was…
It was wrong.
She wished she could take it back. To stop herself from committing the heinous crime.
Sailor Moon watched with blank eyes as Pluto fought Endymion, Nephrite and Jupiter. The others approached her, their faces hardened. All traces of amusement had been wiped from Jadeite's face. Zoicite put his hand comfortingly on Venus's shoulder as she sobbed. Mercury had her visor up, engrossed within her computer as she obviously checked the extent of damage to Kunzite. Mars was looking straight at her, confusion written all over her.
She didn't bother to raise her sword as they raised their hands and didn't even move as she was blasted with Dark power. It writhed within her, making her feel even more horrible. She wished it would just take away everything, turn her so it would make what she had just done all right.
"Fuck!" Venus shouted suddenly, and Sailor Moon looked down at her closest friend. She was sure it was hatred for her that reflected within the blue. But the pain was the most prominent emotion within them, more pain than Sailor Moon had ever seen Venus allow within her. She had been an expert at not allowing her emotions to guide her- that's how the Senshi had ever made it as long and as far as they had.
She hated herself there and then. She had made Minako carry all the load- and now, she was repaying her by killing Kunzite. She had been the one who made Sailor Venus' life miserable- first with the leadership thrust upon her, then the turning and now the death of her lover. If she had been a stronger Princess, none of that would have happened.
"Venus…" Jadeite said as Venus stood, her eyes fixed on Moon's, her sword reappearing in her hand. Moon was so sure that Venus would kill her right there and then.
But instead of that, Venus stood in front of her, the blue eyes full of pain and love. "Stop this, Usagi," she said softly, extending the hand that wasn't holding the sword. Forgiveness was the one thing she never had to ask the Senshi for; it was always provided, no matter the situation.
Even when she didn't deserve it.
"Minako…I'm so sorry," she whispered, looking past the hand at Kunzite, who looked peaceful in his death, as if he was finally getting to rest after millennia of not.
"It's okay," Venus said, smiling softly, "You'll bring him back." There was that belief in her again, the one she could never understand. All these people, they had such belief in her power, when she had never even proven it to herself.
Hell, she should have destroyed their belief in her the second she had lifted that sword at Kunzite.
Mars moved warily, her eyes on Moon, approaching from her right side. Sailor Moon just stared, half at the still extended hand and half at Mars and Venus, unsure if they would attack, and if she would stop them.
Her life had stopped making sense long ago and she stood frozen in time, still trying to make sense of it.
She missed the ease of life before any sort of crazy fighting of monsters and protecting the world. It was too much weight for five girls to hold- and it had proved much too much of a burden. Look at what it had done. Her four best friends were torn from themselves, and she was only millimeters from the same.
She stared within the violet of Mars' eyes, desperate for some advice. Rei always had been good with talking out things, and Usagi wished she could talk to her. She would know the best way to deal with this, the right thing to do at this point. She would understand exactly what Usagi was feeling and support her choice.
The outcome would be the same no matter what she did; she had known that from the beginning. There was no way she could kill the girls. She may have killed Kunzite by some twist of heart, but with him it was different. She hated him and the Shitennou for what they had done to the girls, despised them more than she had ever hated- even more than Beryl. Such hatred had always been in her, and she had no idea where it had come from.
But the girls…she loved them more than she loved herself. To see them so fatally hurt, life draining from them…she couldn't do it.
"You've been strong enough, Usagi," Venus said kindly, a soft smile on her face, "Let us help you."
She glanced over to Pluto, who was still going strong against Endymion, Jupiter, Nephrite, and Zoicite. The powerful Senshi didn't even look tired, despite the time she had been fighting and the many hits she had sustained, including a nasty looking scar across her face. Sailor Moon wished she could be more like her, if even for a few minutes. She wanted to be strong, for once. She was tired of being tired. She had been tired for the past year, both on the inside and the outside. She was tired of feeling all these emotions.
She wanted it to go quiet for even a few seconds.
"I'm sorry, Usa," Venus said softly, sounding as if she really meant it. What did she have to be sorry for? It hadn't been her fault this had all happened. No, it was her own fault.
"Wait, what the hell is-?" Sailor Moon heard Mars saying before she cut off, and Moon could hear the fear in her voice as she turned to face her, "GET DO-!" It was cut off by sharp 'thwips' of sound.
Sailor Moon stared at Mars, who stared back at her now. The violet eyes looked at her sadly as if she were never going to see her again. Then they both looked down.
With a jolt, Sailor Moon watched the splotches of red spread across the white of Mars' shirt.
"MARS!" Venus shouted, rushing past a frozen Sailor Moon. "Mars!? How were you hit? What happened!?"
The Fire Senshi looked away, off the roof, "Snipers," she said simply, "Don't know how I didn't sense them…" Then she smiled, "Oh, wait, thanks, Venus. You gave Oji-san more power, didn't you?" She fell forward, and Venus caught her, leaning so they sat on the ground on their knees. "No wonder Pluto…"
There was commotion happening behind Sailor Moon, but she could understand nothing. Mercury was shouting something, Endymion yelling at the others to do something and she felt an extension of Darkness cover everything around them, blocking out supposed other sniper bullets.
"Fuck. Fuck. Mercury! Get over here, do something!" Venus ordered as she laid Mars on the ground.
Sailor Moon couldn't help but stare at the blood now covering the entirety of Mars' usually pure white shirt. The red matched the bandana around her neck and the red of her skirt.
She could see nothing else but the red. Her mind was frozen at it.
She felt a hand on her shoulder and Pluto saying something quietly, "…good…leave now…while…distracted…" and the pressure pulled her back. She stumbled back and in the brief seconds that her eyes closed in instinct, horror tore through her.
Mars was hurt.
"Shit! She's bleeding out. They got her right in the heart!"
Mars was dying.
"YOU KILLED THEM!" Rei shouted at Minako, who stood at the door, waiting to be let in even though it was her house. She didn't have to, but it seemed like she chose to. "HOW THE FUCK COULD YOU KILL THEM!?" Rei was fuming, and Usagi had never seen her this angry. It was almost like fire was coming off of her, she was a force upon herself. She knew she should feel bad for Minako, but part of her was happy that Minako was facing some justice- what she had done…it hadn't been right.
Luna and Artemis…
They hadn't deserved that.
They had only started their jobs as the Senshi's advisors. As their friends and confidantes.
Usagi couldn't help the tears that slipped from her eyes at the remembrance of her friend. Luna had been the best cat ever, she had protected her as much as she could, had helped her become a better person and had helped her step into her shoes as a Sailor Senshi. She owed Luna her life millions of times over.
But she was dead.
"ANSWER ME, DAMMIT!" Rei shouted at Minako, spitting the words out. Makoto looked ready to back up Rei, but stayed silent as she glared at Minako. Her silence was odd, but Usagi assumed that Rei was voicing all the thoughts for her- all their emotions were so in tune.
"I did what they asked," Minako said quietly, "what they had told us to do if it happened." It was the only defense she would ever say to their faces, Usagi could tell. There were so many other reasons hidden deep within Minako's mind. To protect her Senshi, to protect the world, to protect the Silver Crystal, and even in some way, to protect Luna and Artemis.
"So you kill them!?" Rei asked angrily, "We could have gotten them back!"
"No, we couldn't have!" Minako said, the hint of anger coming into her voice, "There was no way that they would have ever been safe again! If we bowed to the Shitennou this once, Luna and Artemis would be considered our weak spots till they were nothing more than nip for cats themselves!"
Usagi hated that the words were making sense both ways. She didn't want their deaths to be justified. They deserved more than that.
"Do you even realize how crazy you sound right now?" Rei hissed furiously, "You're justifying killing them in cold blood because you couldn't bother to protect them like they protected-"
Minako moved so fast that Usagi barely saw her and the sound of the slap reverberated around the room. Makoto stepped forward immediately, pushing the two of them apart. But Rei didn't react except to put a hand on the handprint on her cheek, looking slightly shocked and dazed.
"Don't you dare," Minako said dangerously, sounding scarier than she had ever sounded before, either as Minako or Sailor Venus, "Don't you dare say I don't care about them. I did this for them!" Usagi knew she believed it completely and she was partly right- she had done it more for the Senshi and the world, but she had done her best to protect the cats too.
"I told them- I ordered them not to follow us!" Minako was shouting now, "But did they listen? No! Does anyone ever listen!?" She was shaking as she walked into the long hallway, glaring at each of them in turn. "I am your leader, I deserve some respect! How am I supposed to help us if no one takes me seriously?" There was silence after that, the four of them looking everywhere but at Minako.
It was true, Usagi hated to admit. Minako had been given the role as their leader, and they owed her their allegiance. But with something like this…?
It was surprisingly Ami who spoke first, "…but we do take you seriously. Not only because you are our leader, but because you've matured more than any of us." She wasn't looking up at any of them, standing off-handedly near the living room entrance, staring down at her feet. "As much as I hate to admit it, Rei, Minako's right. Luna knew it would happen eventually, that's why she taught us everything she knew." She looked up, her blue eyes had aged almost a millennia since the last time Usagi had seen them, and she smiled. It was a bitter smile, full of dislike for their situation, full of hate for the Shitennou. "She wouldn't have wanted this to split us up like this. And in allowing it is giving the Shitennou exactly what they want." She looked away, her eyes narrowed, "I, for one, would rather die than let that happen."
"Damn, Ami," Makoto said quietly. She looked like she were going to be sick. Such quietness was uncharacteristic of Makoto, and it scared Usagi. Makoto had seen so much more death than all of them and Usagi could only imagine what she was feeling. The green eyes that were usually so filled with love and strength were blank. Usagi had to fix that. However this ended, she would make sure Makoto would be happy. She swore it on her life.
"They're DEAD!" Rei shouted, shaking in fury, glaring at Ami, "Fucking DEAD. For helping us. By her hand. And you're both justifying it. I'm sorry if that pisses me off, but maybe I'm the only one of us that's freaking SANE." Tears were welling up in her eyes as she yelled, her voice shaking. She had seen so much death already, to lose Luna and Artemis, it was killing her.
Usagi couldn't stop her own tears for anything and her voice seemed lost. She should have been comforting the others, but she was adrift in sorrow. It was all because of her and the Silver Crystal that this was happening. She should have been doing something to help them now that the worst had happened…but here she was, stranding them to fall apart.
"What would you have done, Rei?" Ami asked softly, understanding in her voice, "Given them the crystal. And then they would have killed Luna and Artemis regardless. I'm not saying I agree with what Minako did, Goddess knows I couldn't have ever done that-"
"They're gone, Ami. And we killed them." Rei retorted sharply.
"And if there had been any other way, I swear on my life, I would have done it," Minako whispered. She looked so broken that Usagi suddenly regretted not stopping Rei from yelling at her- but she knew it would have made no difference. Minako would beat herself up for her choice on her own even more than Rei could.
It was horrible for Usagi to even think that Minako wasn't affected by what she had done. On the contrary, she was the most affected. She was the Love Senshi- to have to make such…destructive choices it must have been killing her. And to say that Minako didn't care for Luna and Artemis would have been even more wrong than anything else. Minako and Artemis had shared a bond for longer than any of them had even known each other. She had loved Artemis, and Usagi knew that Artemis had been a stand-in parent for Minako ever since he had met Minako.
The strength it must have taken to make the decision Minako had…
"I'm s-so sorry," Minako said, her voice choking slightly on emotion. She looked so close to crying, but Usagi knew she never would, not in front of them. In all the time Usagi had known her, in this life and in the last, she had never seen Minako cry. She assumed it was because it would seem 'un-leader-like'. She wished sometimes that Minako would let down her guard and open up completely to them, to share her burden.
But she never would. Because she wanted to protect them as much as possible all by herself.
She felt herself rise from her seat by the door and approach her head Senshi. Minako looked at her, uncertainty in her eyes as if unsure suddenly of her decision. Usagi shuddered to think it was because she thought Usagi hated her.
She threw herself at Minako, hugging the bigger blonde tightly, afraid that she would crumple to the ground from the weight of the world.
She didn't say anything, and Minako clasped her tightly to her, her body shaking ever so slightly. "I'm so sorry," she kept whispering so quietly that even Usagi had trouble hearing it. The hug filled the hollowness in Usagi a little, to know that they still had each other. They always would.
Minako pulled away slowly and Usagi glanced at Rei. The fire had left her eyes and now there was only sadness. She didn't say anything as she faced Minako, but there was a slightly bow of her head. Then they were hugging.
"They wouldn't have wanted me to say those things to you," Rei said when they pulled apart, wiping her tears from her eyes, "I'm sorry." There wasn't forgiveness for what Minako had done, but there was acceptance.
"Right about now, I think a group hug would be good," Usagi said quietly, a slight smile on her face. They all needed to know they were together in this. Luna and Artemis were gone, but they had taught the girls well and the Senshi would avenge them.
She laughed through the tears as memories of Luna yelling at her and making fun of her came to her mind and the girls came together, each holding on tightly to the memories of their mentors and friends.
"They'll always watch out for us," Ami said, her voice thick with tears, "And we'll prove to them and the world that we can do this to avenge them."
"Damn right," Makoto said from above them, her hug encompassing almost all of them in the length of her arms. "We'll get them. We owe it to Luna and Artemis."
They left the hug slowly, then walked to the living room where they seated themselves silently, knowing that they needed to talk, to figure out what they would do without Luna and Artemis guiding them.
"Luna and Artemis are somewhere better than here, not having to deal with the hell Earth has become. They can watch over us safely now, instead of being in constant danger," Minako said after a short silence, and Usagi could tell that she believed it. How could any of them doubt it? Luna and Artemis were their guardians, and would forevermore be their guardian. They would always watch over their Senshi.
"We have to become what they wanted us to be," Ami said quietly, "They knew what was best for us- for the world."
"A perfect team?" Makoto asked tentatively. Usagi remembered Luna and Artemis saying it often, that they were well on their way to becoming a perfect team, connected in ways that even the Sailor Senshi of the past had not been.
"We can do it," Rei whispered, "I know we can. We've got everything a team needs, all the soul we can manage," she wasn't looking at any of them, but there was a soft smile on her face, as if she had known it all along.
Usagi sat forward beside Rei, her heart in her throat, "I promise to try harder to be a better Senshi." She meant it too. She may have grown a lot since Luna had come into her life, but definitely not enough. More was needed, and she wouldn't be the one to keep the Sailor Senshi down.
"Oh, Usagi," Minako said, a laugh in her voice, "I do too. I promise to see this through with each and every single one of you. I promise to do everything I can to protect our team."
"I promise it too," Makoto said, putting her hand on the table, "We'll keep on fighting- no matter how long it takes."
Ami laughed suddenly, but her hand was put on top of Makoto's, "Through thick and thin."
Usagi couldn't help but smile at the girls surrounding her. They were her best friends, they were her partners, and they were her team. They were her family.
She placed her hand on Ami's. The hand was warm under hers and she gripped it, knowing that the warmth would get her through all the cold the world was sending at them.
Rei and Minako glanced at each other, and despite how they had fought each other only minutes ago; they placed their hands on top.
"We'll do this," Minako said, strength in her voice, "Artemis and Luna taught us well."
The girls nodded in unison and looked down at their enjoined hands. It had an air of familiarity as well as something new. She knew their promises would hold true, because she could feel it in her heart. Their love would see them through- how could it not?
It was the strongest thing in the universe.
"Sailor Moon!?" Pluto hissed, "Come on, we have to go, now!"
"Nephrite, Zoicite, get the fucking sniper!" She heard Endymion order and she saw that he was by Mars' side; the two had gotten along the best before Mamoru had been turned.
Pluto appeared before her, blocking her vision of them, of the last time she would see Mars alive.
Emotion welled within her, bursting out. A wail came out, a long shriek sounding like a "NO!"
Pure white light burst from her and everyone was blasted away from Mars, even Pluto. She heard Jadeite shouting incoherently, trying uselessly to get back to Mars' side.
"I'm sorry, Jadeite," she heard around her, realizing it was her thoughts that were being amplified. She moved gracefully, her feet not truly feeling as if they were on the ground to approach Mars, who was staring up blankly. She looked so lost, her violet eyes looking as if they could see something that no matter how hard Usagi tried, would ever be able to.
She bent down to her friend's side, "Rei?"
"Usa…you're so bright…" Mars said, her voice so weak that she could barely hear it.
Sailor Moon touched her broach, and it opened to reveal the Silver Crystal. She laid it on the bleeding Senshi. Her actions were almost happening without her doing them. It was sort of the same way it had been when she had stabbed Kunzite- but this time, she didn't try to fight it. Whatever happened happened.
"Do you remember, Rei? You always used to tell me I was the most powerful person in all the universe."
"Of course I remember," Rei smiled up at her, "You still are, and always will be." Her eyes closed briefly, but she opened them up again, the violet fading away slowly, "It's all right, Usagi. Don't worry about me, I'll be fine."
Rei had always tried to make what she was going through seem somewhat less than what the others were dealing with. She was selfless in that way.
"Then why didn't I save you all with the Silver Crystal. Why couldn't I?"
"SERENITY! LET US IN, NOW!" She heard Endymion shout, and she could feel him trying to get through her barrier, but she swiped it away.
"Because none of us were willing for you to pay the price," Rei said softly up to her.
The ultimate sacrifice. Had she always known it? Deep down, had she always been too afraid of dying if she used too much power?
She knew the answer. And she could see it in Rei's eyes.
They had helped her make that same decision. To never give up fighting- that wasn't sacrificing the right thing.
In life they had each other. As long as they had each other, they would stay and fight.
"I love you, Rei," she said, smiling down at her best friend, "You know that, don't you?"
Rei grinned lightly, "Can't help but know it. Has anyone told you that you wear your heart on your sleeve?" Her eyes slid closed, "It's one of the things that's so irresistible about you."
"I'll save you," Sailor Moon said as she placed her hand over the bullet wound, "You know that too?"
"Never doubted it for a second," Rei whispered but Usagi could tell she was far-gone. The wound beneath her palm pulsed angrily, intent on taking her Senshi away from her.
But she would not let it.
She didn't care what it took from her to end this. All she cared for was that it ended. Her eyes closed and she placed her other hand on the Silver Crystal. It was quiet around her, despite the attacks raining on the barrier she had put up- and more importantly, it was quiet in her.
Peace was in her all of a sudden- was it because she had finally made her decision, because she knew how it would end? She was finally ready to die.
The walls keeping out the Senshi, Shitennou and Endymion out collapsed and they came barging in, bringing all the noise in with them. They were shouting at her, telling her to stop what she was doing.
Pluto was silent however, and she stayed in her place, her ageless eyes on Usagi. In that moment, it was as if doors had opened for Sailor Moon. She knew how Endymion had hurt Pluto to force her remain in the Time Corridor, and how she had escaped finally. She never would have guessed it- Yuuichirou and Rei's grandfather. They had given Usagi so much already, and here they were, still saving her. But releasing Pluto and then blocking the snipers from the vision of Mars and Nephrite had taken too much.
She would save them too. Rei couldn't be happy without them. And she swore Rei would be happy before the end.
"I'm sorry," she whispered to all of them and bent her head back down. Mars was quiet and still and Sailor Moon heard the slow beating of her heart within her very ears. She would not allow it to stop beating.
"Dammit, Serenity!" Endymion shouted, "Don't you dare!" He had quickly approached her and he bent down. His hand reached for hers, readying to pull the Silver Crystal from her. But he never got the chance.
"Onegai," she said to the Crystal within her hands, "I'll give you everything I have. Just save her- save them"
The Silver Crystal pulsed brightly, as if asking her if she was sure. If she was ready.
It was either all of them or her.
She had never made an easier decision.
The power flashed through her immediately and she rose, having no control over what she was doing anymore. Her eyes closed and she felt her clothes lengthening in a way she only had once before, when she had first discovered that she was Princess Serenity.
Her eyes opened and she saw Endymion and the others watching her warily, as if unsure that this time she'd do it. She wanted to laugh at them and at herself, but she couldn't, not with Rei lying on the ground like that, with Kunzite dead beside her. The time for laughing had gone away a long time ago, the second Metallia had decided to take Mamoru away from her.
She stepped lightly on the roof and raised her Moon Wand for what would be the last time. She looked at Endymion, wishing that she could see Mamoru at least once more before…
He paled. It was as if he had seen a ghost and he raised his hand as if to stop her. But before it was raised, she closed her eyes, not wanting to look in the eyes that would beg her to reconsider. And those eyes, that tugged at her heart to follow them because they looked just like Mamoru's- they'd be the death of the Senshi, Shitennou and their own destruction.
If it was the last thing she did, she would see Mamoru's eyes. She promised herself and in that instant she let go.
She could feel nothing but the tears streaming down her face and the power leaving her as if it were blood from a cut. She opened her eyes and was faced with a bright stream of light emitting from the Moon Wand in her hands.
Endymion let go a lightning bolt of Dark Power, aimed straight at her but the light slammed into it, blocked it from hitting her. Then it was a battling of wills. She kept the stream strong, her body shaking in the effort to keep the energy going. She saw nothing but the Light and the Dark, her vision constantly fading in and out.
"LEAVE!" She shouted as she redoubled her efforts, "LEAVE US IN PEACE! YOU HAVE NO PLACE HERE!"
A rumbling filled everything and the world around her darkened as Darkness reared up in front of her, taking the form of a dark cloud, Endymion just its wielder.
She had to draw it away from him.
"I am in my prime here, Princess Serenity," it was a disembodied voice, filled with all the bad things in the world, things she couldn't even try to imagine, "You all feed me better than even puny humans could try. All the power I have, is BECAUSE of you. Why would I leave when I have that?"
"All that power, is NOTHING," she screamed, "NOTHING compared to what we have!"
And she pulled back the wand, and brought up all the strength she had ever gained from her friends, from Mamoru, from her family and then she took that love and flung the Moon Wand and herself at the Darkness.
She sailed over the Senshi and Shitennou, over Endymion and was encompassed completely by the darkness.
"I love them," she whispered to herself.
"Love has no power!" The Darkness, Metallia, spat at her and the words surrounded her. "It is the heartbreak love gives that has the power!"
"Show me all this power, then, Metallia!" She said to it, sneering, "And I'll show you that it has nothing on our love."
She closed her eyes, remembering all the good times, all the bad times and every moment she had spent with her Senshi and Mamoru. The love she had experienced with them, it was worth everything in the world. Even her life.
She felt the emotion fill her and she could feel the Darkness building around her, fighting the Light. She wasn't alone, no matter how much she felt it. Her Senshi may have defaulted to the Dark, but they were always within her. Mamoru might have left her, but he would always love her. That was why Endymion wanted her so, and why the Senshi were still fighting to have her at their side. They loved her, and nothing could change that.
Nothing can take love away. Not even Darkness.
That was what she had learned over the past years- no, not even just the past years- it was what she had learned in two lifetimes. It was time to share it.
It happened within an instant. Light exploded around her, blinding her completely to all else.
She felt it then. The Darkness lifted and Light encompassed her. Her body was weightless, floating in the blinding abyss.
"Leave…" she whispered, her energy completely gone, "Leave them be…"
A piercing shriek full of pain filled her ears, and it was their voices that blended within the single abhorrence.
Tears filling her eyes, she prayed for their safety, singling them out and pulling them with her to the Light. She wouldn't allow Metallia to take them to the hell she was going to.
She'd rather die.
"I've got you…" she whispered as she held on tightly to them.
And then it was over.
Everything collapsed around her and she fell. It was like she was falling miles and miles, nothing around her to stop her fall.
She landed with a jolt and her eyes flew open. It was then that the pain filled her. Nothing else could be felt; it was as if her body had nothing else within it but the pain. She lay, gasping for breath, hoping that the air would somehow soothe the tearing within her.
It took a few seconds for the sound to reach her ears.
She lifted her eyes open again, and this time her hope was fulfilled in truth.
The one word pushed the pain to the back of her mind and at the front lay wonder and joy.
Mamoru looked down at her, his azure eyes full of love.
She smiled, tears dripping from her eyes. She had known he wouldn't let her down. Not in this last promise.
"Oh, Odango," he whispered and his eyes filled with tears as he wiped hers away, as if taking hers into himself, "I'm so sorry."
His features had softened, and it seemed like he was weightless. It surprised her how different he looked from Endymion. The outward feeling Endymion had exuded had always been so strong and forceful, Mamoru on the other hand, had such a kind and lonely feeling to him. His eyes were also the same, and the pain that filled them was nothing of the selfish pain Endymion always held.
She shook her head, but everything within her was so focused on him, drinking him in after so long of missing him.
The thing was, now that she had him back, it was better than she had imagined.
She felt his hand clutching hers tightly, begging her not to let go.
But she had to.
She could feel the life leaving her, and she knew there was no way to stop it now. The energy she had used to cleanse the others…it had been from her very soul.
But she wouldn't change it for anything. Mamoru was safe. That was worth anything.
"The girls?" She asked him. His eyes told her all she needed to know. They filled with wonder and he smiled down at her proudly.
"They're fine. Each and every one," he gulped.
"Where are they?"
She wanted to see them, to make sure they were all fine.
"Right here," she heard Rei say and she turned away from Mamoru. Rei stood before her, her violet eyes as pure as ever and beside her stood Minako, Ami and Makoto. They stood strong, as strong as they had every time they had fought by her side. It was their strength that had given her the power to fight off Metallia, and she knew they wouldn't believe her if she told them that.
"Don't worry, Usagi," Ami said in her motherly tone, something that it felt like she hadn't heard in years, "We'll take good care of you." Usagi was sure she knew what was going to happen, but she wasn't showing it. But Ami knew, she was sure, that Usagi would rather not discuss it now. What was done was done. She only had a bit left with her friends.
Makoto nodded beside her, bending down to Usagi and placing her hand on Usagi's. "You got us through the battle, knew you could do it. Rest now."
Usagi's eyes met Minako's. The blue eyes told her they understood and her pain was more than Usagi could have imagined.
"You saved all of us," Minako said quietly, "Even those who didn't deserve to be saved," and she nodded back towards where Mamoru was. Usagi turned to look, knowing exactly what Minako was saying. Behind Mamoru stood four men. They were men now, if they hadn't been before.
She wished she could take away all their pain and troubles- something they had never asked for but had received by the loads.
She nodded at Kunzite, who smiled back at her softly. It was a true smile, something she hadn't seen him do in the longest time. Zoicite looked thankfully at her, telling her with his extremely expressive eyes that he could never repay her for what she had done- she only smiled at him.
Jadeite shook his head, "You're one tough girl," and he laughed. The laugh filled her heart, glad to know that it was a true laugh, and it would one day light up Rei's life like she deserved.
Nephrite stood the farthest off, agony in his eyes.
She knew they'd never forgive themselves for what they had done- nor would the Senshi, nor would Mamoru.
"They did deserve it," she said, looking back at Minako, "You all deserved it."
"You can't leave us," Minako whispered and the tears spilled forth, "Please."
"Leave?" Makoto said from beside Usagi, "Who's leaving? No one's leaving. We get through this together." She spoke threateningly, as if daring someone to try to change her mind, "Always."
Her heart tore open. "Always," she said, smiling at Makoto. She pushed the tears away. She didn't want anything to block their faces from her.
With her, she would take their memories of all the horrors that had occurred for the past years. Otherwise, they would never be at peace. And she wanted them to be at peace. They never had had a chance at it before, because of her. If she went away, the least she could do was take away the pain they had gotten because of her.
She turned to look back at Mamoru.
"Don't," he whispered, knowing exactly what she was thinking.
"I have to," she said and she wiped his tears away this time, "You could never be happy with these memories."
"I could never be happy without you," he said, begging entering his tone, "Without your memories- I'll have nothing to remember you…"
"I know," she smiled slightly, "But at least you'll live."
She could feel the last of her power draining and knew she had but minutes. "You'll live, and you'll love. You'll have each other." She looked at the girls, clutching Makoto's hand as tightly as Makoto clutched hers, "It's the least I can give you."
"Take our power, Usagi," Rei said, bending down entreatingly, "If we all put our power together, you can live, please…" She looked like she balanced on the edge of bursting out in sobs, but she held it back, for Usagi. She had always been so sacrificing for Usagi. They all had been.
It was time for it to stop. They shouldn't have to sacrifice for her.
"You know I can't. From this moment forth, you are all just human. As it should have been. No more enemy means no more powers." She looked away from her family, "I'm sorry. I love you." She couldn't bear to see their faces fall, even though it would all be erased soon.
Their pain would always be her pain; their love would always be her love.
She'd make it so that they'd have better lives. Pain for them wouldn't be a problem anymore. The course of history would be changed for her Senshi; they would be given the happiness they deserved. She placed life back within Yuuichirou and Rei's grandfather, both of who had sacrificed themselves to help her by releasing Pluto and then shielding the snipers so they could try to kill her enemies.
It would all be forgotten.
No more pain for them.
Her eyes drifted closed, but she pulled them open. Her vision was becoming to blear and she felt detached from her body, as if she were already leaving.
A part of her wished that it wasn't this way- that she weren't dying. Especially without saying goodbye to her family or Motoki or everyone else who had made her life so very special. But she had played the hand she had been dealt- and she had done it right, for the first time in all the time.
Tsukino Usagi was not a failure.
Sailor Moon had saved the world.
In the end, she had done it.
And she had the chance to say goodbye to her Senshi and Mamoru. That was more than enough.
"I love you all," she said to them, "I'm sorry for taking so long to fix this…"
There was a broken silence, and misery floated around the twelve people. Pluto had gone, probably to take her place in the Time Corridor where she would remain unaffected by Princess Serenity's purge of memories. She would be the only one to remember, and it was fitting. Usagi would be remembered by at least one.
She wished she could say goodbye to her family, but there was no more time left. They had given her so much, now she'd give them the chance to be happy without her.
She looked again at Mamoru, a sigh leaving her body.
"Kiss me," she whispered, wanting to know what it felt like at least once before she died. Endymion's kisses had always taken so much from her; she knew Mamoru's wouldn't. It was the last thing she would ask from Mamoru, and it would be more than enough.
With tears in his eyes, he leant forward, his lips touching hers. Emotion filled her one last time as she felt true happiness. She didn't know if she would ever have the chance to feel it again, unsure of what was on the path for them after all this. But she found that with this kiss, she had the courage to go forward and see.
She didn't pull away, mumbling a last "I love you," to him. And she let the happiness cart her away.
No more pain for them. No more pain for any of them. Let them forget all they suffered. Make everyone forget their acts, have no bad remembrances of them in the world or in their souls.
Let them be as happy as they can be.
And so passed Tsukino Usagi, forgotten by all those who had known her and even by those who hadn't. There would be no whispers of the Dark Kingdom ever again, never again would Metallia threaten the Light the Silver Crystal had left behind.
Pluto returned to her post, the sole rememberer of the trouble that had taken place. For once in her life, she did not know what would happen next, and whether the time stream would ever fix itself.
She knew that all those involved would feel like something was missing from their lives, like brightness would never again touch them, but a part of her was glad. They deserved to suffer, even if the Princess hadn't believed they should. But erasing her existence would have the greatest effect on them.
Maybe one day that remembrance of her would come forth again, and maybe with that, they could bring her back one day.
But it was not Pluto's place to interfere.
Only to hope.
And she had all the hope and faith in the love that the Princess had for the Senshi and vice versa, as well as with the Prince. For she had seen it firsthand many times before.
Maybe next time it would all work out.
For, it was there, in sickness and in heath, in darkness and in light, in life- and in death.
Forever and always, that was their love.